From Godwin Tsa, Abuja
In a 4-to-3 split decision, the Supreme Court on Wednesday affirmed the election of Mr Rotimi Akeredolu as Governor of Ondo State.
The apex court in a majority judgment delivered by Justice Emmanuel Agim upheld Akeredolu’s election on the grounds that the appeal by Olutayo Jegede and the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) lacked merit since the appellants failed to include Yobe State Governor and Chairman of the Caretaker Committee of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Mai Mala Buni, a party in the suit.
The majority decision agreed with the decision of the tribunal that the failure of the appellants to include Buni was fatal to their case.
Justices Inyang Okoro, Mohammed Tijani Abubakar and Mohammed Garba all supported the majority decision.
However, the minority judgment led by Justice Mary Peter-Odili, held that since APC is the principal and was made a party, there was no need to join Buni in the suit.
The majority decision said it is the position of the law that Buni being a sitting governor cannot be acting Chairman of the APC and was therefore wrong to have submitted the name of Akeredolu to INEC as candidate of the APC.
Justices of the dissenting judgment also include Ejembi Eko and Ibrahim Saulawa.